Waiting In The Wings

Thursday, May 6, 2021

A Pocket Full of Posies and a squirrel

 A flimsy for the Quilt Along with AHIQ

A Pocket Full of Posies

and if you've been following my progress you will know that I passed on the tulips
for the centre
and went with a flower collage.
After auditioning fabrics for the border I decided to try out Kaffe's Spot collection,
the one I chose was the Autumn colourway.
I tried out various widths both narrow at 1 and 1/2" and wider at 3"neither
of which made me happy, something was missing, so I decided to break the border
into two different widths of Spot with a very narrow band of Poppy Garden,
separating them,
this was the fabric used to cut the collage. To quote Goldilocks
after tasting two bowls of porridge, she tried the third bowl and this was
"just right".

A Pocket Full of Posies is currently 45 and 1/2" square, before quilting.

Two days ago I had a visitor, yes, another squirrel

appeared in my little studio following the arrival of the book below,
which absolutely gorgeous,

in which Kaffe shows a particular quilt and I immediately
knew I had to make one, again not following strictly his colour scheme nor
the setting but doing my own thing!
I began to play with a few of my 2 and 1/2" squares and cut a few
more from Aboriginal Dot in Orchid

I'm well and truly hooked on this project, I have a few more 
currently in the "to finish" basket  of course and I'm working on a plan to
finish these up. Choosing fabrics and design I enjoy the most, quilting not so much,
hence I have approximately 23 quilts, large and small in the afore mentioned basket.

Along with patterned squares will be the fabric selection below and no doubt more will be added

but not to be included in this particular quilt will be the two new Tula Pink fabrics below.

After all the excitement of the arrival of the book and pulling out squares
it was an ideal time to take a walk around the block, 
here's the view from Sandspit Road a little further along the road from our home.

The cloud formation looks like a roll of pleated cotton wool from
a first aid box!

I'll leave you now with one of our flowering sasanqua camellias
Early Pearly

Until next time - Happy Quilting



Thursday, April 22, 2021

Blame it on the scissors and the poppies!

 Of necessity this will be a post short on words and as the saying goes
'a picture says a thousand words'

yes, a real bad case of tendonitis, the worst I have ever had!

Due to my deciding that I didn't want tulips in the centre of my
AHIQ String Tulip QAL I hunted for favourite fabrics and decided on
Poppy Garden  by
Philip Jacobs, a snippet below

as you can see the frilled edges of the poppies are so pretty and
after deciding I should like a central collage within my string squares
 I had a moment of inspiration, why not carefully cut
around a few individual flowers for the collage. Out came my very
special tiny, sharp scissors and I began and rather overestimated how
long cutting into those frills would take, the result you can see in the first
photo of this post!

Here is the posy before ironing and fusing down using Misty Fuse.

Just as I had envisaged - a posy of poppies
set into the surrounding string squares although the purple
colour is slightly off in the photo

just a border needed now and if I ice my hand regularly I'm hoping I
can have that done in two or three days.

As I was finishing the posy I checked on the Caring Bridge site for
news of Debbie from Stitchin'Therapy and learned that she had passed away
just 10 hours earlier. I had followed her blog since 2013 and we had exchanged
many emails  during that time, she battled for the past few years with many health challenges 
and with great courage, she will be sadly missed.

On that note here is a peaceful scene taken down at the beach yesterday

the sea just sparkled, it was beautiful and I think the seagull
under the bench was enjoying the view.

PS more words than I had thought!


Wednesday, April 7, 2021

Progress at last

 Two works in progress in the post today.

Green Diamonds is almost at the finish line, here's a photo taken
yesterday and only a few more diagonals to go now.

The left hand piece is stitched, the right hand side is still in two section with one more strip
ready for  joining, only a few more rows to go  and fingers crossed they will be completed today.
I have to say that I am disappointed in that even with the greatest care and a little starching some of the bias edges have stretched a little, I can live with that
but I wouldn't make another diamond quilt, certainly not with these small size ones.

On to the String Tulip Quilt Along and
my outer strip blocks are all finished

and the next step is to work on the centre.
As you can see above we have the word Tulips in the prompt from 
you  can read the post from the first month of the QAL there.
Ann did say that we could change up a little, different flowers in the centre
not necessarily tulips so I'm going with the something a little different,
making a start on cutting out below.

There's also the cutting of fabrics for a new piece, more
about that in the next post but just a peek below

these have been in my stash for some time.

In the garden, even though we're in Autumn, we still have a few
blooms, Bergenia is one still flowering.

Hope you all had a Happy Easter!


Sunday, March 21, 2021

My first post of Autumn

 It's now been just on three weeks since I wrote a post.
The past three months have been a really stressful time for me and my quilting and
blog posting
have suffered as a result of this, but I'm back on board now, fingers crossed!!

The last official day of Summer here in NZ I picked the last of the  sweet peas
growing in the garden, I'm missing their sweet perfume!

However the first day of Autumn had the most beautiful sunset,
the colours became richer as the minutes passed, but I rather like
the soft golden glow in the clouds right here.

For those who follow me regularly you will know that I'm sewing along with
AHIQ String Pieced Tulips QAL
and my progress has been slow, there are now more blocks on the wall,
some sewn together and others pinned in place all ready to hit the sewing
machine tomorrow.

Only three more blocks to go before I make a start on the tulips. 

I took the opportunity to add to my fabric store during my quiet time, some of my favourites below
from Kaffe Fassett Collective latest range

and I also made a start on adding fabrics for eldest grandson's quilt
to a collection from the store.

 Hoping to make a start on this at the end of April.
If you click on any of the photos they will enlarge.

Confession Time
I have been really lax with my reading of blog posts from you all, only able to spend  a little time now and again, I know there will be many I've 
missed reading, sending my apologies to all of you!

See you soon


Thursday, February 25, 2021

A quiet time for quilting

 Nothing too exciting this post.
I've been busy with my string blocks for the
AHIQ String Tulip QAL just a few more to sew now and
I'm really cutting it fine to have them all complete by the 28th, but
I'll get there!

Green Diamonds

She's not showing quite as bright as she truly is and at the moment
one half is sewn together and the other half is in the process, pinned here and there but
at least I am now heading down from the top right and the
strips will become shorter and more manageable.

Where the two halves meet there's going to be a little adjustment,
a few diamonds unpicked and restitched to have them matching up correctly.

Whilst I've enjoyed putting this together would I make another quilt
all diamonds - I would not. I had to starch because all the fabrics are KFC
and they're a little finer than the regular quilting cottons. Even with the starch
there is stretch here and there.

Apart from the above, the blocks, planning future quilts, the highlight of my
day today was a visit to the quilt store for more pins and an extra
cutting blade, an exciting photo below!

Funnily enough I did feel that I needed just a few more Tilda fabrics
to add to my collection

and I was very restrained and bought just one 1/2 yard from the
KFC fabrics

the reason for my restraint being that I have a largish order of the new
Kaffe Fassett Collective release, which should be here around March.

So folks, that was my exciting week apart from being rated a
Priority 2 case to see the Oral Maxillary specialist within the next
four weeks, such fun. So I best make the most of my quilting as I might
just be out of action for a short time.

Garden - two little flowers, seeds sown a while ago

aren't they so pretty?

The bottom photo is a new zinnia and the top one
a small cosmos.

Enjoy the weekend and stay safe.


Monday, February 15, 2021

A rainy day in Alert Level 3 in Auckland!

 Community case of the Covid variant UK has
put Auckland into Level 3, the race is on to track down other contacts
and we have a number of rules to follow to try and knock this
on the head.

The only positive side to being told to stay home as an oldie and medically comprised
is that there are no distractions, it's raining and I can sit and quilt!

I have been plodding along with my string blocks for 
AHIQ String Tulip QAL

and have only placed three up on the wall foe the moment,
I was impatient to see the effect! I've also taken out the papers and sewn
the top two blocks together. I have enough for two sides now and will
get a move on to finish up the remainder.

In between the string blocks I have a stack of fabrics waiting to be
added to their respective stash baskets,

however  because I have a number of quilts on my project list which need 2 and 1/2 squares/strips
I'm going to haul out my electric cutter and cut two strips of each fabric, in fact I intend to slowly cut through as many of my KF Collective fabrics as possible.
I love working with these fabrics when cut down.

Changing the subject slightly I found yesterday a special
piece of Indian, I guess you say embroidery, but when I bought this years
ago from a shop specialising in ethnic pieces I was told this was made using pieces of old
trappings from elephant covers used on special occasions.
I had 'lost' it  a few years, couldn't remember where it was but a certain four legged
member of the household had obviously scrambled up on my baskets and 
 knocked it down the back of the stacks.

Here's the piece - 18"square

and below a close up of the centre

and another small section

click to enlarge these.

Below is the reverse of the piece.

All from me right now, on to more string blocks.


Tuesday, February 2, 2021

AHIQ Prompt January 2021 - String Tulip QAL - my dress rehearsal

Before I begin my post, those  who are unaware of the  AHIQ blog
 begun by
Ann and Kaja
a number of years ago 
please visit their blogs, links above, or click on the AHIQ logo
on my RH side bar.

Briefly, every six months a prompt or challenge is issued
and this time Ann has decided on the prompt in my post title.
Full directions will be issued by Ann but she kindly sent me an early set
to work through, the first step will be the string squares, so here I go,
visit the link below for an overview of the details proper.


and the link to the first month's notes from Ann

String Tulip Quilt QAL month 1

Below is one of the quilts made by Ann and  the inspiration for the QAL.

note:I was unable to contact Ann for permission to use this photograph
as it 10.45pm here in New Zealand and all good Texas folk will
probably be fast asleep.

The string blocks are made using paper foundations and I
went with 6 and 1/2" cut for a finished block of 6".

I used ordinary copy paper and cut squares at 6 and 1/2", as Ann
suggested I drew a few diagonal lines on them as a guide.

My string box was hauled out

and a few strings pulled out at random

Ann has lots of detail in her notes on strip sizes, sorting fabrics and cutting
and I followed exactly as she suggested.

At the sewing stage she suggests a shorter stitch length and I went with 1.5 on my Bernina,
and it certainly helped with paper removal!
I read carefully her instructions on placing the strings and followed them as she suggested,  not necessarily keeping exactly to the guide lines on the paper.

I found it easy to shift the second string a little to left or right in order
to create a slightly different angle to the lines I drew initially, I
 used a 1/4" seam, Ann has another method to try also.

After seam sewing the next step was to fold the paper back which
means the seam can be checked for excess bulk, and I used
an 'add a quarter' ruler to trim any excess fabric before straightening
the paper out again.

Then on to the third string and repeated the process of folding back paper and trimming.

I also pressed every pair of strings after sewing. I was concerned about 
the process of removing the papers later but they almost fell out!
Ann has a great tip for
ease of paper removal, you should definitely follow this one, you'll find it
on her last page of process notes.

The corners were no problem following Ann's notes where she
gives three methods, I found her method of using a rectangle a good one 
ensuring that all the paper was covered.

When this piece was flipped over the last piece was easily covered,
I then turned over and once again pressed the fabrics on the front of the block and
also the paper on the back.
When this was done it was time to trim the excess fabric, I used my 6 and1/2" square

You can see there is very little waste.

I made four blocks in total, block number one is below, this was made
using a real mix of fabrics and you can see that the orange check fabric with
the brown line in there really adds interest, I think my fabric mix was good
and that this block has the required adhoc look.

Here is my second block and I think you can spot the difference.
I somehow slipped back into my more regulated mode and veered slightly away from
Ann's suggestions.

I mentioned this to Ann but she said I really needed four blocks to see the effect

and as the master of beautiful string pieced blocks she was so right!!
This was my first time at foundation paper piecing and I really did enjoy the process,
as we progress through February with these blocks I think I will
become looser with my size of strips, not as regimented, but I do think seeing the four blocks
together has me feeling much happier and looking forward to sewing up more.

Ann has written an amazingly thorough and easily understandable set of  instructions
full of great detail and tips for us, much more than I am obviously able to share with you here, 
but I hope I have
given you a peek of my first step of the the process.

I would encourage anyone who is interested to
jump in and join us all, we're going to have an exciting few months.

Thank you so much Ann!